Nourish, Thrive, Bloom
Growing wise, brave, loving children who are nourished from the outset by our values-based community and through God’s word. We believe each unique child should thrive through our rich and diverse curriculum and that they should blossom in our care, being fully prepared for their future.
Jeremiah 17: 7-8 “Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends its roots out by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”
Our Core Christian Values are:
Love: learning to love ourselves, each other and God.
John 13:34 "So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other."
Courage: learning to be brave, resilient and determined.
Joshua 1: 9 “Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Wisdom: learning to make wise choices in all areas of life.
Proverbs 8:11 “For wisdom is far more valuable than rubies. Nothing you desire can compare with it.”
Our vision and values are at the heart of everything we do. They run through our ethos, our curriculum and underpin our teaching and learning to provide an environment which prepares our pupils to be responsible, caring and happy citizens.
We consider that the nourishing of our pupils starts before they come to our school. We foster strong working connections with our feeder nurseries, our local community and the church. We also believe that when a pupil joins the school, the whole family joins too and we love welcoming everyone into our school community. As a church school, we believe that our pupils are nourished by God’s Word and we use the Bible and Christian songs regularly in our collective and class worship times and on our Pause Days, to help pupils get to know God better. We work hard to give our pupils the best start at school, identifying needs and gaps early on and swiftly providing the right support to give all pupils the best start. We believe that the school should be full of stories; read, acted, played, listened to and that pupils’ spoken vocabulary and reading are essential to them thriving. We also identify those that may be working ahead of their peers at an early stage and embed challenge for all from the earliest days in school. It is vital that pupils can self-regulate and cope in social situations and this is taught in a caring and thoughtful way through our PSHE curriculum and by our expert staff team who follow our relationship-based behaviour policy in a consistent and fair manner.
Our pupils thrive in our care and we take our task of creating the right conditions for growth seriously. Our rich and diverse tailor-made curriculum has been designed for our children by our staff team, who know the children at this school so well. We cover the National Curriculum in all subjects but have added extra elements to our curriculum to support our pupils to grow strong physically, academically and mentally. Our forest school provision and outdoor learning are essential to this and our wonderful grounds provide opportunities for gardening, outdoor science and geography and playtimes with lots of space. There are opportunities to develop leadership skills in a variety of ways across the school. Reading and Maths will always be at the centre of our focus; these key skills are fundamental to a pupil’s progression and we are meticulous and consistent in our teaching approach in these subject areas. We also recognise the importance of creative arts in creating rounded children and provide artistic, musical and dramatic opportunities for our pupils. We offer a varied selection of trips and visits to support our learning and enhance each pupils’ cultural capital, including a week’s adventurous activities residential for Year 6.
Each unique child develops in their own time and we recognise that our pupils will blossom in different ways as they grow. We celebrate achievements, big and small, at our weekly celebration assembly and also in class and with our coveted proud cards. There are opportunities to represent the school, including sports competitions and in music. We often hear from ex-pupils and we are often astounded at what they have gone on to achieve. Our task is to build aspiration in our pupils; we love to hear them dream big! We believe that our pupils should leave us fully equipped for the next steps in their journey and ready to face challenges that come their way.
The Headley Tree
It is a wonderful coincidence that the Chestnut tree a feature which marks the start of the High Street in Headley at the crossroads, was adopted as the 'logo' for the village. Planted in September 1891 on the site previously occupied by the village stocks. The tree was planted by the Rector Mr Laverty, the butcher, Mr Wakeford, and the landlord of the Holly Bush, Mr J Kenyon, who was by reputation an 'old soldier who could tell a good tale'. The wrought iron bench which circles the tree is inscribed with the various names and versions of name for the village which have been seen over the years.
God’s Plan and Trees
The image of a tree is one that has been brought to mind in thinking, imagining and setting a new vision for The Holme School. Trees bear fruit, they offer life, shade and nourishment and are a symbol of flourishing. They are also rooted – without deep roots they cannot grow.
Trees provide a framework for the biblical story. Admittedly, it’s not the only way to understand the Bible; however, trees are present at every important stage. At creation, humans were blessed to live in the Garden of Eden. A central aspect of this paradise was trees described as “pleasing to the eye and good for food” (Gen. 2:9). Believe it or not, nothing else is described as “pleasing to the eye” in the creation account! What stood at the centre of the garden? Trees—the tree of life with its life-giving fruit, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, from which humans were not to eat.
We read in Genesis 3 that Adam and Eve sinned by eating from this second tree. They brought sin to humanity and to the rest of creation. They were banished from the garden and, significantly, from the tree of life. The ensuing story of salvation is to bring humanity back to the tree of life: a setting of perfect harmony with God and one another in a restored creation. Jesus pays the price for our sin on a tree, another word for the cross. This dead tree becomes a symbol of salvation, pointing to the flourishing tree of life in the new heavens and new earth in Revelation 22.
Trees in the Bible
Within this grand story of redemption, trees figure prominently in many other ways. Benefits of trees are numerous and varied. Because trees are essential for human life and flourishing, tree metaphors appear frequently in the Biblical message. Between the tree of life in Genesis and in Revelation, how are we to live? Like a tree!
Psalm 1:2-3 tells us that drawing nourishment from God’s Word makes one like a strong tree. The path toward success from God’s perspective is best understood by delighting in the law of the Lord and observing a thriving tree. In Proverbs 3:18, wisdom is a tree of life that will lead to blessing. The righteous are compared to palm trees and cedars of Lebanon in Psalm 92:12. The palm tree refers to the date palm, a desert tree, while the cedars of Lebanon were the tallest and most massive trees in the region, located in the mountains north of Israel. Despite their differences, both trees were picturesque, strong, and long-lived—a fitting metaphor for a godly life.
When it comes to the New Testament, there is more to trees than Zacchaeus, the tax collector and tree climber (who climbed a tree related to the fig family, not a sycamore). Jesus used the mustard seed and tree to speak of the growth of his kingdom (Matt. 13), and Jesus used a fig tree to describe his second coming (Mark 13). In Romans 11, the apostle Paul uses an olive tree to explain salvation and the people of God. Both Jew and Gentile, separate people for millennia, come together now as one in Christ. The ability to graft branches into olive trees illustrates how two diverse groups become united.
When you are amazed at the beauty of the forest or the shape and stature of a majestic tree, what should you do? Worship. Trees lift their limbs in praise to their creator and in so doing point us to God. Psalm 96:12 states, “Let all the trees of the forest sing for joy.” Isaiah 55:12 concurs: “All the trees of the field will clap their hands.” And speaking of the prophet Isaiah ...
The Bible Tree Guy
Which biblical author mentions trees most frequently and seems to have the most arboreal knowledge? The prophet Isaiah. Which Bible verse lists the most species of trees and how many? Isaiah 41:19: “I will put in the desert the cedar and the acacia, the myrtle and the olive. I will set junipers in the wasteland, the fir and the cypress together.” Just as God will supply trees that signal water sources and provide shade in the desert, God will abundantly bless God’s people.
Isaiah prophesied the Messiah using a tree: “A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse” (Isa. 11:1). The stump represents God’s judgment because of sin. A fruitful tree was chopped down and appears dead. But the tree, likely an olive tree, is very much alive underground. There is hope! From the stump comes a shoot that becomes a new tree. Despite present destruction and despair, God is faithful and at work. Jesus will come to bring hope to the world. Additionally, the Messiah’s arrival is described with a tree: “He grew up before him like a tender shoot” (Isa. 53:2). And when Jesus comes, what will his people be like? “Oaks of righteousness” (Isa. 61:3). For people around the world, oaks are a tree of strength, long life, and numerous benefits.
The Kingdom of God
Jesus likens the Kingdom of God to a mustard seed – a tiny thing – that grows and becomes a tree in which the birds find their homes (commentators think Jesus was referring to a mustard tree Salvadora persica rather than the mustard plant we’re more familiar with).